“What is man that Thou art mindful of him?”

Ps 8:4a

The Psalmist David here asks a searching question that every one of us must answer: Who are you? What is there about you that would make God take notice?

Many people are quick to come up with answers. They may say things like, “I’ve lived a decent and moral life. Certainly, God must take notice of that.” “I seldom miss church and am generous with my contributions. That has to be pleasing to Him.” “I always do my best and try to be a good example. What more could God ask?” God asks a lot more. He demands perfection. He wrote a divine law in every man’s heart that, since the fall into sin, no man can keep. On the basis of God’s unchanging will, our conscience condemns us as failures.

What is there about us that would make God take notice? The simple answer is nothing. There is not a soul on earth that can claim God’s attention because our lives are constantly marred by sins like selfishness and greed and, most of all, pride. One of the greatest temptations of the devil is to get us to believe that somehow God will recognize our sincere attempts at Christian life and will, therefore, answer our prayers. The Psalmist straightens out our thinking when He tells us in another place: The Lord looked down from heaven, and what did He see? “There is none that doeth good.”

You see, that question, what is there about me that would make God take notice, forcefully brings home what grace is all about. If there is nothing attractive about me and God loves me none the less, what does that tell me about God’s love? Our mortal minds, frankly, cannot understand this. We cannot understand why our Lord would love a worthless world enough to sacrifice His Son for their sins. Can you see why the Apostle Paul speaks of it as a love that surpasses all understanding?

Is it clear to you now why this question, “What is man that Thou art mindful of him,” is one that everyone must answer?

If we feel that God must notice us because of our works, then we are rejecting the very plan by which God would save us. But if, through the Holy Spirit, we, by repentance, recognize our total worthlessness, then we are worth everything to Him. Then the puzzling statements of our Savior begin to have meaning: “So the last shall be first,” and “He that loseth his life for My sake shall find it.” Then the love of God, which exceeds our fondest dreams, will assure us of forgiveness and hope and everlasting salvation.